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Let's say you had one legit $20 and one really good photocopy of the same $20. If someone were to try to spend both the true bill and the imitation one, someone who took the problem of looking at either of the bills' serial numbers would see that they were exactly the exact same number, and thus one of them had to be fictitious.

This isn't a perfect analogy--we will explain in more detail below. .

Once a miner has confirmed 1 MB (megabyte) worthiness of Bitcoin transactions, they are eligible to win the 12.5 BTC. The 1 MB limit was set by Satoshi Nakamoto, and is a matter of controversy, as some miners think the block size should be increased to accommodate more information.

Note that I said that verifying 1 MB value of transactions makes a miner eligible to earn Bitcoin--not everyone who supports transactions will receive paid out.

1MB of transactions can theoretically be as little as 1 transaction (though this is not in any way common) or several thousand. It depends on how much data the transactions take up.

In order to earn Bitcoin, you need to fulfill two conditions. One is a matter of effort, one is a matter of luck.

2) You have to be the first miner to reach the perfect answer to some numeric issue. This practice is also known as an evidence of work.

The fantastic news: No advanced math or computation is involved. You might have discovered that miners are solving challenging mathematical problems--that is not true at all. What they are actually doing is trying to be the first miner to come up with a 64-digit hexadecimal number (a"hash") that is less than or equal to the hash.

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The bad news: Since it is guesswork, you need a good deal of computing power in order to get there . To mine successfully, you need to have a higher"hash speed," that is quantified in terms of megahashes per second (MH/s), gigahashes per second (GH/s), and terahashes per second (TH/s).

If you want to estimate just how much Bitcoin you could mine with your mining rig's hash rate, the website Cryptocompare provides a very helpful calculator.

Either way a GPU (graphics processing unit) miner or an application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) miner. These can run from $500 into the tens of thousands. Some miners--particularly Ethereum miners--purchase individual graphics cards (GPUs) as a low-cost method to cobble together mining operations. The photo below is a makeshift, high-tech mining machine. The graphics cards are such rectangular cubes Continued with whirring circles. Note the sandwich twist-ties holding the graphics cards to the metal pole.

Case in point I tell three friends that I'm thinking about a number between 1 and 100, and I write that number on a piece of paper and seal it in an envelope. My friends don't need to guess the specific number, they just have to be the first person to guess any number that is less than or my explanation equal to the number I am thinking of.

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Let us say I'm thinking of the number 19. If Friend A guesses 21, they shed because 21>19. If Friend B supposes 16 and Friend C guesses 12, then they have both theoretically arrived at workable answers, since 16<19 and 12<19. There is no"extra credit" for Friend B, even though B's answer was nearer to the target answer of 19. .

In Bitcoin terms, simultaneous answers happen frequently, but in the end of the day there can only be one winning answer. When multiple simultaneous answers are presented which can be equal to or less than the target number, the Bitcoin network will determine by a simple majority--51 percent --that miner to honour. Normally, it is the miner that has done the most work, i.e.

The losing block then becomes an"orphan block." .

Now imagine that I pose the"figure what number I'm thinking of" question, however I am not asking only three friends, and I'm not thinking of a number between 1 Look At This and 100. Rather, I am asking millions of prospective miners and I am thinking of a 64-digit hexadecimal number. Now you see that it's going to be extremely difficult to guess the ideal answer.

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The number above has 64 digits. Easy enough to understand so far. As you likely noticed, that number consists not just of numbers, but also letters of the alphabet. Why is that

In order to understand these letters are doing in the middle of numbers, let's unpack the word"hexadecimal."

As you knowwe use the"decimal" system, which means it is base 10. This in turn means that each and every digit has 10 chances, 0-9.